Monday 30 June 2014

6 ways to improve your bounce rate to boost SEO results

Bounce rate, as explained by Google is “the percentage of visits in which users view only a single page of your site.”

If you have an e-commerce website, your aim is to get visitors to stick around, look at your products, read about your business, put items in their basket and make a purchase – then you need to get your bounce rate as low as possible as a high bounce rate means low conversion.

Bounce rate is also used by Google to measure how relevant a website is to the search terms or keywords used to find it. This means that if a website has a high bounce rate, not only will it convert fewer visitors, its Google rankings will be negatively affected. And on the flip slide, lowering your bounce rate shows Google that your website is relevant and useful, positively impacting your rankings.

How do you find out your bounce rate?

a) Firstly you’ll need to have Google Analytics set up.

b) If you’ve already done this, go to Behaviour > Site Content > Landing Pages.

c) Select Comparison View from the icons at the top right of your data table.

d) Select Bounce Rate from the (compared to site average) drop down, and you should see a chart like this:

Now on to how to reduce your bounce rate.

1. Drive quality traffic

As mentioned above, bounce rate tells Google how relevant a website is to search terms used to find the website. Driving quality, relevant, hungry-to-buy traffic is more important than getting large volumes of less interested visitors as poor quality traffic will only result in a high bounce rate.

First concentrate on ranking in Google search results for keyword terms that correlate closely to what your website is about, rather than more vague and competitive keywords with a large number of monthly searches.

2. Focus on customer intent

One reason that visitors don’t stick around on a website is not being able to find what they’re looking for. You know the frustrated feeling; you instantly hit the back button and go to the next website in the list of search results.

Overcome this by thinking about what your customers are most likely to want, need, expect, be looking for on your website and then clearly provide a route to that information from your landing pages. (A landing page is any page that a visitor enters your website on.)

Use enquiry emails to provide you with insight into questions customer couldn't easily find the answers to on your website. You can use these questions to create an FAQ page, write blog articles on, add information to your landing pages, improve your product pages, and so on.

3. Get your website looking its best

With the online world becoming increasingly competitive, customers have higher expectations, they’re more impatient and less tolerant of poor design. Good design now signals legitimacy, trustworthiness and providing a quality product and service.

Google actually gives redesigning the landing pages of a website as the first piece of advice to websites with high bounce rates.

4. Improve usability

Usability is just as important as design. A website which looks amazing but offers a very tedious checkout process will lose customers to its competitors. How easy a website is to use is actually a reflection of the quality of customer service provided, it will not only build trust it will keep your visitors on your website, reducing your bounce rate. You can read more about how to improve your usability here.

5. Make your website mobile friendly

This is simply a website that will resize according to the screen it’s being viewed on. It’s a great way to optimise your website for those browsing on mobiles or tablets. Mobile traffic now accounts for one quarter of all web searches and 30% of shoppers say they will abandon a website if checkout is not optimised for mobile.

Additionally 57% of mobile users will leave a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Clearly, making your website accessible to mobile users can have a massive effect on reducing your bounce rate.

6. Give visitors a clear reason to buy from you

We've already mentioned how competitive e-commerce can be; this final point is one we couldn't leave out. Is it obvious to visitors why you are different to competitors? If you provide the best value for money, best quality product or fastest delivery service is this clearly stated on your website?

This differentiation actually comes down to brand definition. Visitors need to be given a compelling reason to stick with you rather than going back to the previous, maybe slightly cheaper but not as great, product. Providing this will keep them glued to your website and to you as a customer.

Wednesday 18 June 2014

New Phone Number

Hello there.

Please note that our NEW telephone number is now 0191 27 66 904 or 07960 117077.

Thank you.

Thursday 12 June 2014

Goodbye Thomas Zehetemair

Yesterday we witnessed the entire audience of Sage Gateshead Hall One standing to applaud Thomas Zehetemair farewell after twelve years of musical directorship of the Royal Northern Sinfonia. Twelve years that has seen the opening of Sage Gateshead and the Queen bestowing the title 'Royal' to the Sinfonia.

As he gave his goodbye speech there were more than a couple of us with teary eyes.

It's not the last we'll see of Thomas though, he'll be returning at Christmas as Conductor Laureate to conduct the Messiah.

It's quite fantastic really to have such acclaimed musicians and a world class music venue a stone's throw away from us.

And we're not just saying that to be nice because they're our client.

Sage Gateshead is really up there when it comes to acoustics - with special air-filled-concrete, funny shaped wooden walls and lots of curtains. It's acoustically perfect. Which is why it attracts talent like Thomas Zehetemair.If you've not yet been... you should.

Monday 9 June 2014

15 e-commerce best practices you CAN'T ignore

The purpose of this blog article is to showcase some best practices when it comes to e-commerce websites in terms of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), User Experience (UX) and Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).

So here are just a few examples of how to make your e-commerce website not only user friendly but Google friendly too.

1. Product reviews using rich snippets

Rich snippets are any additional pieces of information included in a search result. Here's an example of a product review rich snippets as displayed on a search engine results page.

2. Advertiser and business reviews using rich snippets

Here's how advertiser and store reviews using rich snippets are displayed on a search engine results page.

Other examples of how rich snippets can be used include:

  • Reviews
  • People
  • Products
  • Businesses
  • Recipes
  • Events
  • Music

3. Display delivery information prominently

It’s important to clearly display delivery costs, free delivery and free delivery threshold options.

4. Homepage advertising / marketing

Give your visitors (and Google) something new to look at each time they visit your website. Keep it fresh. This can include displaying special offers, sale items, what’s new and more.

5. Star ratings

Displaying product star ratings in the category view of your website will help your visitors to decide which are the best products based on customer reviews.

6. Customer product reviews

Here's an example of the use of summary scores for different aspects of a product.

And here's an example of how customer reviews can be displayed a product page.

7. Reviews of your business

Prominent placing of reviews of your business from external review engines such as Trust Pilot can help your customers to trust you more.

8. Google+ reviews

Positive Google+ reviews reassure customers searching for your brand in Google of your quality. Google+ has so many other features to take advantage of too so it shouldn't be ignored.

9. Give your customers confidence

Tell them why they should buy from you.

10. Stand out from the crowd

Tell your visitors how and why you are different from your competitors. This should be displayed prominently on your website. (And it shouldn't be that you're simply cheaper than your competitors). Your brand agency can help you with this one.

11. Compare products

The functionality to have an easy to view product comparison table is advantageous in certain retail markets such as electronics, household appliances, automotives etc.

12. Tabbed product pages

Great to keep your product pages informative yet non-cluttered.

13. How secure is your website?

Let your customers know that it’s safe to buy from your website. This must be clearly displayed for any visitor (repeat customer or new prospect) to see.

14. Validation error

Don’t make your customers re-enter information twice if they make a mistake first time round filling in a form.

15. Thank you page optimisation

Here's an example of social sharing, related items / customers also bought etc. on a thank you page after checkout is complete.

These are just some examples of what you can be doing to help make your e-commerce website as usable as possible for your prospects / customers. There are so many other things to consider including customer retention and the optimisation of your checkout process but these are for another article.

Thank you for reading and if you'd like to chat to us at angelfysh about how we can help you get the best out of your e-commerce website then please get in touch.